Former Panthers basketball standout and Drury Athletics Hall of Famer Brandon Kimbrough will be entering his third season as an assistant coach when the Panthers take to the court in 2015-16.
Kimbrough has been a key part of DU squads that have combined to finish 80-17 over the past three seasons, including an NCAA-II national championship in 2012-13 and a return trip to the NCAA-II Elite Eight in 2013-14 and a third straight NCAA Tournament appearance this past season, when the Panthers captured their second Great Lakes Valley Conference championship in three years.
His success on the sidelines is no surprise when you consider Drury fans were accustomed to much of the same from the former DU standout point guard in his three years as a Panther from 2004-05 to 2006-07, when he received some form of All-Heartland Conference or All-Great Lakes Valley Conference accolades each season.
Kimbrough also played professionally for three seasons in England, earning all-league honors and ranking as one of the top scorers and assist leaders in his pro leagues in each season before returning to Drury as a graduate assistant coach in 2011-12.
A former standout for DU coach Steve Hesser in their time together as player and coach at Springfield's Glendale High School, Kimbrough still ranks 38th all-time (1,052 points) in scoring and No. 8 in assists (434) for his Drury career, in which the Panthers qualified for NCAA-II national tournament play in each of his final two seasons.
Dan Friedel is entering his second season as an assistant coach for Drury Basketball.
Friedel is a graduate of Duchesne High School in St. Charles, Mo., where he played four seasons of basketball for coach Wade Bouslog and continued to assist his alma mater with summer individual and team workouts after graduation.
He graduated from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in May, 2013 with a Secondary Education degree. While at UMSL, Friedel served as a student assistant coach under Steve Tappmeyer and former DU assistant Dale Ribble.
"I feel so fortunate to have been given the opportunity to work with Coach (Steve) Hesser and such a great coaching staff here at Drury," Friedel says. "The winning tradition and high standards they set for themselves as a program made the decision to come to Drury very easy."
Friedel has been a part of Drury teams that have gone 49-13 over the past two seasons. The 2013-14 team returned to the NCAA-II Elite Eight after winning a second straight NCAA-II Midwest Regional title, while last year's 21-9 finisher captured the Great Lakes Valley Conference Championship and made the NCAA tourney field for a third straight year.
Joining the Drury Men's Basketball Coaching staff this season will be Taylor Wagener. . . Taylor graduated from Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina in May of 2013, where he played for four years and was a member of the 2009-2010 and 2010-2011 Southern Conference Championship and NCAA Tournament teams. . . Taylor was voted Team Captain by his teammates his senior season, where he went on to shoot 45% from the 3-pt line and 82% from the free throw line.. . He majored in Government, minored in Economics, and was a 4-time member of the Southern Conference Honor Roll. . . He also was a member of the Student Athletic Advisory Committee from 2009-2013 and served as President his senior year. . . That same year he was also president of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
Taylor spent the past year coaching Varsity Basketball at Charlotte Christian High School, in Charlotte, North Carolina, his Alma Mater. . . He was a 3-year letterman and 2-year starter at CCS, playing alongside the likes of Stephen Curry and Seth Curry, as well as many other NCAA Division I athletes. . .
Taylor was born in Sacramento, California to parents Mark and Karen Wagener. . . His sister is a musical theater major at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. . . Taylor has spent the past 10 summers working and volunteering at Camp Barnabas in Purdy, MO, a camp for kids with physical and intellectual disabilities.
Taylor is excited to be apart of this new opportunity, and is eager to learn from Coach Hesser, as well as the rest of the Drury staff. . . He looks forward to his involvement in another program rich in tradition and success.